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“Vote YES on 2” could lead to historical change in dental insurance

Oct. 19, 2022
Question 2 in Massachusetts would ensure that patient premium dollars go to patient care, and would require dental insurance companies to spend at least 83% of premium dollars on dental services.

Massachusetts is doing something that has the potential to change how dental insurance operates across the country.

The Massachusetts Dental Society (MDS) and the American Dental Association (ADA) are collaborating with dentists, dental team members, and the public to promote the Massachusetts Dental Care Providers for Better Dental Benefits committee's "Vote Yes on Question 2" campaign. 

The "Vote Yes on Question 2" campaign in Massachusetts is reaching out to voters across the state to tell them about the importance of a yes vote on Question 2, which would ensure that patient premium dollars go to patient care, not insurance company profits. Question 2 would require dental insurance companies to spend at least 83% of premium dollars collected on dental services or refund the difference to patients, as opposed to them using the money for executive salaries or other administrative costs.

This type of percentage requirement—called a medical loss ratio (MLR)—is already in effect in Massachusetts for medical health insurance. It’s past time for dental insurance companies to also meet a similar standard to provide a minimum percentage of patient premium dollars on actual patient care. 

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Why Massachusetts dentists are saying "yes" on election day

Dental insurance companies fight hard to protect their profits, and they’re spending millions on a misleading ad campaign that opposes Question 2. To secure a “Vote Yes on Question 2” win, the Massachusetts Dental Care Providers for a Better Dental Benefits committee needs additional funds to push back against the dental insurance industry’s deceptive ads.

They also want to make sure that voters in Massachusetts receive the facts about how Question 2 will benefit dental patients. All members are needed to support this campaign and advocate on behalf of patients and the profession. 

Dental plans should serve patients first and foremost, and the companies that offer them should welcome transparency and accountability. Voting yes on Question 2 would accomplish these goals. Dental professionals have advocated for dental insurance reform for years, and now we have the opportunity to be a part of that change! A win in Massachusetts will open the door for legislative change throughout the US. 

Everyone in the country who wants dental insurance companies held accountable for spending premium dollars on actual patient care should stand with dentists, dental care teams, and dental patients in Massachusetts and contribute to this campaign. All dentists, dental team members, and patients are the beneficiaries of this initiative. We are a dental family standing together to protect and advocate for our patients. 

If we all take action, we can proudly tell our patients, families, and friends that we’re working hard to ensure patients get the care they deserve. Visit voteyeson2fordental to get involved and to hold dental insurance companies accountable for spending on patient care.

About the Author

Andrew S. Tonelli, DMD

Andrew S. Tonelli, DMD, is committee spokesperson for the Massachusetts Dental Care Providers for Better Dental Benefits, cochair of the Massachusetts Dental Society Government Affairs Committee, and a member of the American Dental Association since 2010.

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